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Miss Widdecombe : In June 1964 there were 16,488,000 males in the work force in employment in the United Kingdom, compared to 13, 718,000 in June 1993. Over the same period, female numbers rose from 8,444,000 to 11,520,000.
There are no equivalent LFS estimates before 1979, but the census of population held in 1966 shows 5 million married women in employment in the United Kingdom.
Miss Widdecombe : In the United Kingdom, in 1993, the average level of claimant unemployment, unadjusted for seasonal effects, stood at 1,700,561 among men aged between 18 and 44--the closest available age group.
Mr. Simon Hughes : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many people in the London boroughs of Southwark, Lambeth, Lewisham and Tower Hamlets between the ages of 18 and 25 years are in (a) further education, (b) Government employment training schemes and (c) currently unemployed.
c |Southwark|Lambeth |Lewisham |Tower --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Claimant unemployed 18-24 year olds (April 1994) |5,395 |6,046 |4,943 |4,277 Further Education students aged 18-25 years domiciled within each borough<1> (academic year 1992-93 Full-time and Sandwich |1,015 |1,456 |1,018 |1,108 Part-time |1,526 |2,282 |1,677 |1,451 |------- |------- |------- |------- Total |2,541 |3,738 |2,695 |2,559 <1> Students may study in places other than where they are domiciled.
Mr. Simon Hughes : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many people in the London borough of Southwark have found employment in the last 12 months ; and how many of these jobs were (a) full-time and (b) part -time or job share.
Mr. Michael Forsyth : Information held centrally relates only to the number of people placed into jobs by the Employment Service jobcentres and numbers of people leaving claimant unemployment. Between April 1993 and April 1994 jobcentres covering the Southwark area placed 9,591 people into employment. Nineteen out of 20 of all the jobcentre vacancies filled in Southwark during this period were for full-time jobs and the remainder for part-time. It should be noted that, nationally, only about one quarter of all engagements are made through jobcentres. Figures are not available for job-share vacancies.
In the Southwark local authority area the unadjusted number of people leaving claimant unemployment between April 1993 and April 1994 was 24,198. Information is not routinely available on the destinations of claimants who leave unemployment. However, past survey evidence indicates that the majority of people who leave claimant unemployment go into jobs.
Mr. Nigel Jones : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what use his Department makes of psychometric testing techniques ; what plans he has to extend the use of psychometric testing techniques in his Department ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Michael Forsyth : The Department's main use of psychometric tests is in the individual assessment of the capabilities of people with disabilities by placing, assessment and counselling teams. Where tests are used,
Column 410performance then forms part of the basis for counselling and action planning to support people's efforts to find employment. Internally, the Department uses psychometric tests to a limited extent in its management development programmes.
Providers with whom the Department contracts to deliver services to unemployed people may choose to use psychometric tests. Guidance is made available through a regularly updated, "Review of Psychometric Tests for Assessment in Vocational Training" ; this authorative publication was initiated by the Department and is now maintained by the British Psychological Society.
The Department has no plans to extend the use of psychometric tests as such, but will do so where they offer a cost-effective addition to the basis for decisions.
Mr. Kirkwood : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment in what circumstances it is his Department's practice, when issuing a public consultation document, to inform those consulted that their responses will be made public unless they explicitly ask for them to be kept confidential ; and if he will arrange for his Department to do so in all cases in future.
Mr. Michael Forsyth : Where comments are sought in consultation exercises, it is already the Department's usual practice to make clear that they are sought on the understanding that they can be made publicly available unless respondents have requested that their remarks be treated as confidential.
Miss Widdecombe : During the 1993-94 financial year, the North Yorkshire training and enterprise council received a management fee from the Employment Department of £1,460,995. The administrative costs of the TEC will be shown in its audited accounts which will be published shortly.
Mr. Cox : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what was the total expenditure on (a) employment training and (b) youth training in 1993 within the Greater London area ; and how many (i) men and (ii) women were on such schemes.
Miss Widdecombe : Table 1 shows the total expenditure on training for work, which replaced employment training in 1993 and youth training in 1993 within the Greater London area. Information on the number of men and women on YT and TFW is not available in the format requested. Table 2, however, shows how many men and women started on these schemes throughout 1993.
Table 1 Total expenditure 1993-94 contract year (Provisional) |£ ------------------------------------------------------------- Youth Training |47,960,837 Youth Credits |9,958,616 Total Youth Training and Youth Credits |57,919,453 Training for Work |60,036,946 Notes: 1. The 1993-94 Contract Year is 1 April 1993 to 31 March 1994. 2. The expenditure figure is provisional and may be revised. Training and Enterprise Councils have 4 accounting periods ( an accounting period is 4 weeks) in which to bring to account expenditure relating to their 1993-94 contract. 3. From 29 March 1993 Training for Work replaced Employment Training, Employment Action and High Technology National Training. Training for Work offers people who are long term unemployed the opportunity to improve and update skills or learn new ones, or to do temporary work of benefit to the community.
Table 2 Trainee starts during the 1993-94 contract year |Male |Female ------------------------------------------------------------ Youth Training |9,640 |6,912 Youth Credits |3,781 |2,778 Total Youth Training and Youth Credits |13,421|9,690 Training for Work |27,057|18,916 Note: Youth Credits is a system which gives school leavers an entitlement usually in the form of a voucher or smart-card' with a specific monetary value, to purchase vocational training from employers or training providers.
Ms Short : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment, (1) pursuant to his answer of 21 March, Official Report, column 50, about the destinations of youth trainees by training and enterprise council area, if he will update the table to cover the period July 1992 to June 1993 ;
(2) pursuant to his answer of 21 March, Official Report, column 50, about qualifications obtained by employment training and training for work leavers, if he will update the table to cover the period July 1992 to June 1993 ;
Column 412(3) pursuant to his answer of 21 March, Official Report, column 50, about the destination of employment training and training for work trainees, if he will update the table to cover the period July 1992 to June 1993 ;
(4) pursuant to his answer of 21 March, Official Report , column 50 , about the destination of youth trainees, if he will update the tables to cover the period July 1992 to June 1993 ;
(5) pursuant to his answer of 21 March, Official Report , column 50 , about the destinations of employment training and training for work leavers in each training and enterprise council area, if he will update the table to cover the period July 1992 to June 1993 ; (6) pursuant to his answer of 21 March, Official Report , column 50 , about the qualifications obtained by employment training and training for work leavers in each training and enterprise council area, if he will update the table to cover the period July 1992 to June 1993.
Miss Widdecombe : Wage rates will be a matter between the employer and the young person, reflecting the employer's investment in the training and the expectation of the young person of improved wage rates later on. Modern apprenticeships are not time bound ; there will be flexible arrangements for the time individuals need to become qualified, which could by three years or longer.
Mr. Austin Mitchell : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what industries and types of work are to be covered by the modern apprenticeship scheme as set out in the "Competitiveness : Helping Business to Win" White Paper ; and what has been the change in the number of jobs in these areas since 1979.
Miss Widdecombe : The modern apprenticeships initiative will make a major contribution to Britain's skill supply by providing young people with high quality training in technical, craft, supervisory and junior management occupations across a wide range of sectors. The intention is that from September 1995 the modern apprenticeship initiative will cover all sectors, but prototypes will run in the following sectors from September 1994 : agriculture, business administration, chemicals, child- care, electrical installation, engineering manufacturing, engineering construction, information technology, marine engineering, Merchant Navy, polymers, retail, steel and travel service.
Information about changes in the number of jobs in these areas is not available in the form and for the period requested. The basis on which occupational information is collected was changed in 1989. The table provides estimates of the numbers of people working in these occupations for spring 1993 and spring 1991, the earliest date for which comparable data are available :
Employees of working age in Great Britain Occupation |1991 |1993 |Change+- |Change |(Thousands)|Percentage ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Managers and Administrators |2,708,736 |2,980,610 |+272 |+10.0 Associate professional and technical occupations |1,875,301 |1,882,160 |+7 |+0.4 Craft and related occupations |2,758,326 |2,278,945 |-479 |-17.4 Source: Labour Force Survey.
Should the hon. Member require information about the earlier period between 1979 and 1989, I will send it to him and place a copy in the Library.
Mr. Austin Mitchell : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what assessment he has made of the effect of (a) low pay and (b) job insecurity on skills levels in the areas covered by the modern apprenticeship scheme.
Miss Widdecombe : Lack of skills often leads to low-paid insecure jobs. By gaining high-quality, relevant skills, young people can improve their employment and earnings prospects. Modern apprenticeships and accelerated modern apprenticeships will help 70, 000 young people a year to attain such skills.
Unrealistic pay levels for young people would result in reduced employment and poorer opportunities.
Mr. Barron : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment, pursuant to his oral statement of 24 May, Official Report , column 197 , what is his estimate of the cost of implementing the recommendations contained in the Health and Safety Commission's "Review of Regulations" report.
Mr. Michael Forsyth : The Health and Safety Commission's "Review of Regulations" is intended to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of the regulatory regime. Most of what needs to be done lies within the commission's existing remit, and builds on the approach that it has taken over the past 20 years. The commission has advised me that it will begin to implement its proposals and recommendations on the basis of its existing public expenditure provision ; but the matter will be kept under review.
Mr. Alan Howarth : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what percentage of the total recurrent costs of employment in the private and public sectors are the estimates of £75 million and £20.4 million costs to private and public sector employers, respectively, given in the compliance cost assessment in respect of the Civil Rights (Disabled Persons) Bill.
Mr. Simon Hughes : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what he considers to be the current level of structural unemployment in London ; and what assessment he has made of the trend of changes in this level.
Mr. Worthington : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what progress has been made in negotiations with the European Union for the utilisation of Britain's allocation of money under the European social fund objective 3.
Mr. Michael Forsyth : The European Commission opened formal negotiations on the United Kingdom objective 3 plan on 27 April. Subsequently, there have been two further negotiating meetings. The United Kingdom has consistently pressed for speedy progress and will continue to do so.
Mr. Michael Forsyth : The Great Britain plan for European social fund objective 3 in 1994-99 outlines the purposes for which the Government propose to use the money. A copy of this document is in the Library. The plan has not yet been agreed by the European Commission.
Mr. Worthington : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment, pursuant to his answer of 3 May, Official Report , column 428 , for what reasons he decided not to use any of Britain's allocation of European social fund money for objective 4.
Mr. Milburn : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many job offers were reported by staff in his Department under the requirements of the rules on the acceptance of outside appointments in each of the last 10 years by (a) staff of grade 3 and above, (b) staff below grade 3, (c) staff in sections concerned with procurement or contract work, under section 15 of the rules of 1 February 1993 and (d) staff in other sections, under section 14 ; and how many of these reports were followed by an application to join the company concerned.
Column 415on private investigation services during the last two years ; if he will list those companies which have been employed by his Department during this period ; what safeguards his Department took to ensure that these agencies were members of the Association of British Investigators ; and what guidelines are currently in operation within his Department as regards this matter.
Mr. Michael Forsyth : In the last two years, the Employment Service has twice instructed solicitors to use private investigation services as detailed in the previous answer of 11 May 1994, Official Report, column 166. In the first case, the cost to the ES from the private solicitor was £75. In the second case, the ES has not yet been billed by the Treasury Solicitor ; the cost is estimated to be £100. In both cases the solicitors who engaged the investigation agencies were responsible for ensuring that they were reputable.
Mr. Kirkwood : To ask the Lord President of the Council in what circumstances it is his Department's practice, when issuing a public consultation document, to inform those consulted that their responses will be made public unless they explicitly ask for them to be kept confidential ; and if he will arrange for his Department to do so in all cases in future.
Mr. Newton : The Privy Council Office does not normally issue public consultation documents. Any future exercise would be conducted in accordance with the code of practice on government information and any other relevant guidance.
representations the Commission has received regarding the need for a creche in the parliamentary estate.
Mr. Beith : In this Parliament the Member answering for the Commission and the Chairman of the Administration Committee have replied to 24 oral or written questions regarding the provision of child care. A further six questions to the Commission stand on the Order Paper for oral reply. In addition, 47 Members have so far added their names to early-day motion 862.
Mr. Llwyd : To ask the Lord President of the Council if he will list each Bill presented to Parliament since 1964 which has proposed setting up an elected body for Wales, indicating the year of presentation, the proposer and the final stage at which it arrived.
The "Wales Bill" introduced in 1977, received Royal Assent on 31 July 1978 and was later repealed in 1979 following a referendum.
Column 416Information on private Bills and private Members' Bills can be obtained only at disproportionate cost.
Mr. Robert Ainsworth : To ask the President of the Board of Trade which Minister made the appointment of the Director General of Gas Supply ; and if he will make a statement on the process involved in the appointment.
Mr. Heseltine : The appointment was made by me in accordance with section 1 of the Gas Act 1986. External executive search consultants were employed, and the post was advertised in the national press.
Mr. Alton : To ask the President of the Board of Trade how many of the blocks on the United Kingdom continental shelf that have been licensed to oil companies, and have been identified as containing oil and gas reserves, have remained undeveloped for more than eight years since the blocks were first licensed ; what are the combined estimated reserves of those blocks ; and how many blocks lie off the coast of the north-west of England.
Mr. Eggar : Up until the end of 1985, there are a total of 106 significant discoveries in 87 blocks without development approval. Of these 106 significant discoveries, 15--in 13 blocks--are presently under discussion for development.
The remaining 91 significant discoveries--in 77 blocks--contain estimated total gas reserves of 5,777 billion cubic feet, and oil and condensate reserves of 1,767 million barrels.
One discovery block of these 91 discoveries is in the north-west area of England.
Column 417companies to bring forward their development plans to maintain the level of United Kingdom engineering expertise.
In addition to this, my officials review with the companies on a regular basis their programmes for future developments. Where they identify discoveries with no foreseeable development, the companies are encouraged to offer them, by sale or swap, to other companies.
Mr. Alton : To ask the President of the Board of Trade under what circumstances blocks that have been licensed to oil companies can be confiscated on the grounds that they have not been developed ; and what is the maximum period a block can be left unexplored or undeveloped before the Government will take action.
Mr. Eggar : Under the current regulations that govern licences in seaward areas, licensees are required to submit a development plan within a period of 18 years if the licence period is to be extended. If there is any breach or non-observance by the licensees of any terms and conditions of the licence, including exploration and drilling commitments, the Secretary of State may revoke the licence.
Mr. Heseltine [holding answer 26 May 1994] : I attach great importance to environmental considerations in the exploration for our oil and gas reserves, and will continue to do so. Knowledge of environmental sensitivities is developing over time, as are the methods of addressing them and the techniques used in exploration. I will, of course, continue to discuss the offer of blocks with environmental organisations--including the Joint Nature Conservation Committee--and will take their views into account when deciding which blocks can be licensed.
Mr. Llwyd : To ask the President of the Board of Trade if he will give details of the allocation of blocks to companies for oil and gas in the Irish sea ; and what environmental restrictions have been put on these companies.
British Gas Exploration and Production
110/2A, 110/2B, 110/3A, 110/8A, 110/9A, 110/15, 111/3, 111/4, 111/8, 110/10, 111/15, 113/26A, 113/27A
103/3, 106/28, 106/29, 110/18