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Mrs. Ann Winterton : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, pursuant to his answer of 28 June, Official Report, column 525-26, if he will list those practical initiatives in Nigeria which his Department is funding in support of a democratic transition in that country ; if he will indicate the amount of funding
Column 119for each project ; and if he will make a statement indicating specifically what steps his Department intends to take to assist the work of the National Constitutional Conference in Nigeria.
Mr. Lennox-Boyd : Since April 1993, we have provided office equipment and literature to organisations concerned with democracy and human rights--£40,000--help towards the running of and participation in human rights conferences--£12,000--and support for monitoring of the June 1993 election--£10,000. Further initiatives totalling up to £75,000 in 1994-95 are being considered. In addition, we have helped the work of the National Constitutional Conference by providing its library with books and journals on legal, political and constitutional issues, including copies of the democratic constitutions of several Commonwealth countries--£5,500.
Mrs. Helen Jackson : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will issue guidelines to prevent the use of photographic or other material gained in the course of forensic pathology for public entertainment.
Mr. McNamara : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many Northern Ireland prisoners have received transfers from England and Wales to Northern Ireland since 1 January 1993 ; and how many were (a) permanent, (b) temporary, (c) male, (d) female, (e) loyalists and (f) republican transfers.
Mr. Peter Lloyd : Since 1 January 1993, three male prisoners have been permanently transferred from England and Wales to Northern Ireland and eight male prisoners have been temporarily transferred. In addition, four male prisoners previously temporarily transferred have been granted further periods of temporary transfer in Northern Ireland. No female prisoners have been either permanently or temporarily transferred during this period, and one of the prisoners transferred was convicted of a terrorist offence. It is our policy not to comment on the past or present political affiliations of prisoners.
Mr. McNamara : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what was the greatest, the shortest and the average length of time between application for transfer and notification of the decision to accept or reject the application for temporary or permanent transfer from England and Wales to Northern Ireland.
Mr. Peter Lloyd : Transfers of prisoners between United Kingdom jurisdictions have been effected since the introduction of the Criminal Justice Act 1961. The information requested could not be obtained without disproportionate cost.
Mr. McNamara : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how long a prisoner whose application for transfer from England and Wales to Northern Ireland is rejected must wait before reapplying.
Column 120application will be considered individually and on its own merits under the criteria announced to Parliament on 23 November 1992.
Mr. Maclennan : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, pursuant to his answer of 18 May, Official Report, column 456, if he has now considered the representations submitted in February 1994, on behalf of Colin Ivor Dunning, together with earlier representations ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Maclean : I regret that our consideration of those representations is not yet complete and it is possible that some outside inquiries may have to be made before a decision is made on whether to refer Mr. Dunning's conviction to the Court of Appeal or to take any other action. I will ensure that the hon. Member is informed as soon as there are any further developments.
Ms Ruddock : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department in how many cases staff shortages at Aldington prison have been the reason for the non-production of prisoners in court in the past 12 months.
Letter from Derek Lewis to Ms Joan Ruddock, dated 5 July 1994 : The Home Secretary has asked me to reply to your recent Question about the number of occasions in the past 12 months on which staff shortages at Aldington prison have been responsible for the non-production of prisoners in court.
Aldington is a small prison which receives few requests to produce prisoners for court appearances. Other establishments are advised not to send to Aldington prisoners who will need to be produced at court. Until recently, there has been no system at the prison for recording such requests. It is known that the obligation to produce prisoners for Crown Court appearances has been fulfilled without exception. In the absence of any statistics, however, it is not possible to give any precise figures about productions at Magistrates courts. A system of recording all requests for production, including the reasons for any cancellations, has now been introduced at Aldington.
Mr. Michael : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, pursuant to his answer of 28 June, Official Report, column 458, (1) if he will provide the evidence available to him on the extent to which benefits may accrue (a) to the organisation and (b) to the individual ; and what assessment he has made of the benefit to the public of introducing performance-related pay ;
(2) if he will list the specific benefits that will accrue to the police service as a result of performance-related pay and the defects resulting from the present system which he aims to correct ; (3) if he will list his targets for the improvement in the performance of police officers (a) in terms of specific activities and (b) in terms of improvement sought.
Column 121overall performance. This does not mean judging performance against crude indicators such as numbers of arrests or crimes cleared up. The introduction of an element in police pay related to overall performance will enable the police service, in a tangible way, to distinguish the especially good performance from the average performance, which is not possible under the current pay system. Together with the other police management reforms being introduced by the Government, performance- related pay will assist in the process of improving quality and increasing efficiency by providing a sensible incentive to police officers and a better basis for managing police pay, which constitutes some 80 per cent. of all money spent on policing.
Ms Ruddock : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, pursuant to his answer of 29 June, Official Report, column 627, on how many occasions United Kingdom Detention Services Ltd. has received warnings in relation to its management of Blakenhurst prison ; what was the nature of the warning on each occasion ; and what was the outcome.
Letter from Derek Lewis to Ms Joan Ruddock, dated 5 July 1994 : The Home Secretary has asked me to reply to your recent Question about the warnings United Kingdom Detention Services have received in relation to their management of Blakenhurst prison.
Excluding the occasions mentioned in the earlier reply where default notices have been issued against the contractor and the one occasion where payment was withheld, the Controller has on six occasions required the Director of United Kingdom Detention Services to improve specific areas of service delivery. These warnings related to a number of matters including contingency arrangements, supervision of visits, visits by the Director to the segregation unit, the timely discharge of prisoners with adequate clothing, provison of regime monitoring information, and cleanliness. All the warnings were acted upon by United Kingdom Detention Services Ltd and no further action proved necessary.
Mr. Peter Lloyd [holding answer 4 July 1994] : Responsibility for this matter has been delegated to the Director General of the Prison Service, who has been asked to arrange for a reply to be given. Letter from Derek Lewis to Ms Joan Ruddock, dated 5 July 1994 : The Home Secretary has asked me to reply to your recent Question about the reinstatement value of Blakenhurst Prison.
The current reinstatement value of Blakenhurst Prison is estimated at £91 million. This valuation is based on an estimate of the new replacement cost of the buildings, using current construction costs, from which deductions are made to allow for age and condition. The valuation also includes an estimate of the value of the land in its existing use.
Column 122This valuation is in line with the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors guidelines on asset valuations and will be reviewed and adjusted annually.
Mr. Corbyn : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will list the (a) prisons, (b) detention centres and (c) police stations used to detain persons under the powers of the Immigration Act 1971, as amended ; and what is the number of persons currently detained at each individual establishment.
Immigration Service |Number ------------------------------------------------------------ Campsfield House |165 Harmondsworth |95 Gatwick Beehive |16 Queens Building |15 Stansted |7 Port Detention |7 Newhaven |6 ------- Prison Service ------- Aberdeen |2 Belfast |1 Belmarsh |8 Blakenhurst |10 Brinsford R C |6 Bristol |4 Bullingdon |1 Brixton |4 Canterbury |33 Cardiff |1 Chelmsford |4 Dover |23 Durham |2 Edinburgh |1 Elmley |1 Erlestoke |3 Exeter |6 Feltham |4 Glen Parva |1 Gloucester |1 Greenock |9 Haslar<1> |128 High Down |13 Holloway |11 Hull |4 Leeds |4 Lewes |3 Liverpool |3 Norwich |5 Pentonville |21 Reading |1 Risley |1 Rochester |1 Shrewsbury |2 Strangeways |9 Swaleside |1 Swansea |1 Wandsworth |7 Winchester |8 Winson Green |40 The Wolds |1 Wormwood Scrubs |6 Police Stations<2> |43 ------- |------- Total |749 <1>Haslar Holding Centre is primarily an Immigration Detention Centre, although managed by the Prison Service. <2>The numbers held in individual police stations are not readily available and could be obtained only at disproportionate cost.
(2) what appointment procedures will be set in place for constituting the membership of probation boards ; and when such procedures will be published.
Mr. Maclean : Primary legislation is required to enact the probation board proposals and the timing of this depends on an appropriate legislative opportunity. Details of the procedures proposed for appointments to boards will be confirmed at that time.
Mr. Hoyle : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether representatives of voluntary bodies who are either tendering for or involved in partnerships will be eligible to be members of probation boards.
Mr. Maclean : A number of probation committee members have active links with voluntary sector organisations which are, or may be, involved in partnerships with the probation service. Although those links should not be a bar to probation committee membership, it is important that committees have in place procedures to avoid any conflicts of interest which may arise. Similar considerations are likely to apply to probation boards in due course.
Mr. Hoyle : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department which probation services in England and Wales will be reducing staffing levels in the financial year 1994-95 ; and what will be the consequent effect on probation work loads.
Mr. Maclean : It is for each probation committee to decide how the resources available to it should be used to best effect ; and the Home Office does not have information about committees' plans for the remainder of the present financial year with regard to numbers of staff in post.
Mr. Charles Wardle : The Government do not support the extension of European Community rights of free movement to third-country nationals and consider that the admission of third-country nationals should remain a matter for individual member states. We are discussing with our European partners a proposal in the draft external frontiers convention which would exempt third-country nationals who are legally resident in another member state from any visa requirement for a short visit. This proposal would make travel within the Community easier but would give no automatic right of free movement to resident third-country nationals.
Mr. Llwyd : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many drivers and passengers were summoned for travelling without a seat belt in (a) 1990, (b) 1991, (c) 1992 and (d) 1993 ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Charles Wardle : The information requested is published in Home Office statistical bulletin "Firearm Certificate Statistics, England and Wales 1992", issue 23/93, a copy of which can be found in the Library. Figures for 1993 are not yet available.
Mr. Donald Anderson : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what contingency plans he has formulated for co-ordination between police forces in the United Kingdom and Interpol in respect of computer pornography and other obscene material if the obscene publications branch at Scotland Yard is closed down.
Mr. Charles Wardle : No proposals about the future of the obsecne publications branch have yet been made, but the Metropolitan police have given assurances that its work will continue whatever the recommendations of the current headquarters and specialist units' review.
Mrs. Roche : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many staff are currently on court escort and custody service in the Metropolitan police district ; and how many staff will be on this service when Securicor is operating all of this service in July 1995.
Letter from Derek Lewis to Mrs. Barbara Roche, dated 5 July 1994 :
The Home Secretary has asked me to reply to your recent Question about the number of staff currently employed on the court escort and custody service in the Metropolitan Police area and the number of staff who will be employed on this service when Securicor are operating the whole of it from July 1995.
It is not possible to make a simple comparison of this kind because of the difficulty of comparing like with like. The service has hitherto been provided by the Metropolitan Police and Prison Service but not by staff exclusively dedicated to it. Therefore, calculating the overall resources devoted to the work was difficult. To overcome this problem the number of staff so employed was calculated on the basis of full time equivalent posts. It has been calculated that the Metropolitan Police employed 271 full time equivalent police officers and 47 full time civilian staff on court escort and custody work. This excludes the time deployed on the work by more senior officers. Using a similar methodology it was calculated that the Prison Service employed 335 full time equivalent prison officers. These figures exclude time spent by drivers of private hire vehicles, where these are used for escorting.
These staffing levels reflected the level of activity in the 1992-93 financial year. Since April 1993 there has been a 25 per cent. increase in the remand population and this would have resulted in an increase in staff time utilized had the police and Prison Service continued to provide the service.
Column 125Securicor intend to employ 815 uniformed staff, consisting of 738 basic grade prisoner custody officers and 77 supervisors. This figure includes vehicle drivers who are certificated prisoner custody officers and who will be carrying out escort duties at court. The number of staff to be employed by Securicor reflects the increasing number of remand prisoner movements to and from court for which they will be responsible.
The cost of the contract over five years is £96 million or just under £22 million, exclusive of VAT, for a fully operational year. This compares with an estimated annual cost under the previous arrangements of approximately £28 million.
Mr. Redmond : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what decisions his Department has taken in respect of TECs over the last 12 months ; and if he will make a statement on his Department's involvement with TECs over the same period.
Mr. Howard [holding answer 30 June 1994] : Officials from the Home Office and United Kingdom Passport Agency have had a number of meetings with representatives of the Central London TEC and Investors In People (UK) Ltd. Passport agency officials have also met the TECs for the areas in which the agency's regional offices are located. There have also been meetings between officials of the Immigration and Nationality Department and the South London TEC ; the Fire Service college and Gloucestershire TEC ; and the Forensic Science Service with Birmingham TEC. All those meetings have been in connection with the Home Office commitment to the Investors in People--IIP--initiative ; none of them has involved particular decisions. In addition, there have been meetings between representatives of a number of Prison Service establishments and their local TECs concerning the development of both staff and prisoner non- vocational qualifications, and steps towards IIP accreditation. In the context of developing local policies to help offenders and ex-offenders to find employment, the Home Office has advised chief probation officers to seek agreements with TECs.
Mr. McAllion : To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster (1) if he will define the role of the private sector forum on market testing, its terms of reference and the criteria used for issuing invitations to attend ;
(2) if he will list the names of the individuals and companies of those invited to attend, and those who actually attended, the January meeting of the private sector forum on market testing ;
(3) what safeguards exist to prevent those individuals and companies invited to take part as members of the private sector forum from financial gain from contracting out of Government services as a result of their membership of the forum ;
(4) if he will list the names of the individuals and companies of those invited to attend the July meeting of the private sector forum on market testing.
Mr. Waldegrave : The role of the private sector forum is to provide a channel of communication on "Competing for Quality" issues between the private sector, central Departments, and other Departments and agencies.
Column 126There are no formal terms of reference. The forum will provide an opportunity for the Government and the private sector to exchange experience on the "Competing for Quality" programme and to identify best practice which could be more widely adopted. No specific contracting opportunities will be discussed, and the forum will not provide a means of redress for companies which have failed to win competitions. Those matters must be discussed between bidders and individual Departments in the normal way. Invitations have been issued to a broad and representative range of those industries participating in the "Competing for Quality" programme.
The meeting in January was called to discuss with contractors and consultants the Government's intentions, as announced in the next steps review in December 1993, to publicise prior options reviews of agencies and to invite views from interested parties. Those present were :
John Allen, BET Group
John Barker, Kleinwort Benson
Richard Benton, Capita Group plc
Norman Biddle, Symonds Facilities Management plc
Mark Call, QDM Limited
Charles Cox, Hoskyns Group plc
Peter Farmer, Ernst and Young
Kit Farrow, Merchant Bank Association
Paul Fuller, Touche Ross
Marc Gillespie, 3i Group plc
Peter Holmes, SEMA Group
Richard Nicholls, Serco Group plc
Francis Plowden, Coopers and Lybrand Deloitte
Elizabeth Ransome, KPMG Peat Marwick
Marwan Rifka, EDS-Scicon
Peter Rowley, Grant Thornton
Steven Unsworth, Price Waterhouse and Co.
Vincent Watts, Andersen Consulting
David van den Woude, Mackwood Finance
Mathew Young, Y&S
Of those companies invited, only Owens Associates was unable to attend. There is no prospect of any of those individuals and companies securing financial gain by virtue of their attendance at the forum. Should any of the companies bid for work under the "Competing for Quality" programme, they will do so under the same competitive conditions as other bidders.
The following private sector representatives are expected to attend the private sector forum on 8 July.
Rod Aldridge, Capita Group
Maggi Bell, Manpower plc
Norman Biddle, Symonds Facilities Management plc
Gerry Bunn, Hunting Aircraft Ltd
Tom Butler, EDS United Kingdom
Charles Cox, Hoskyns plc
Ian Downey, Serco Group plc
John Hall, Business Services Association
Peter Holmes, SEMA Group
John Jack, PROCORD Ltd
Brian Neylan, Securicor Group plc
John Owens, Owens Associates