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Mr. Dowd: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what proportion of unemployed people went on from restart interviews to (a) restart or other training, (b) full-time jobs, or (c) part-time jobs of fewer than 24 hours a week in the last 12 months.
Miss Widdecombe: Responsibility for the subject of the question has been delegated to the Employment Service Agency under its chief executive. I have asked him to arrange for a reply to be given. Letter from M.E.G. Fogden to Mr. Jim Dowd, dated 3 November 1994:
The Secretary of State has asked me to reply to your question about the proportion of unemployed people who went on from
Column 1356Restart interviews to a Restart course or other training and full or part time employment.
Unfortunately, not all of the information you have requested is available as we do not differentiate between full and part time employment placings.
Between October 1993 and September, 842,857 clients started Employment Department (ED) employment or training programmes following a Restart Interview. This figure includes Jobclub, Jobplan, Job Review Workshop, Work Trials, Business Start-Up Scheme, Community Action and Job Interview Guarantee as well as Restart Courses and training options like Training for Work and Learning for Work. This represents 29.4 per cent. of the total Restart interviews conducted. Restart interviews also achieve other positive outcomes including clients moving on to other benefits and signing off for other reasons. Between October 1993 and September these additional positive outcomes totalled 6.3 per cent. of all Restart interviews. The total positive outcomes figure therefore for the 12 months to September equalled 37.2 per cent. of all Restart interviews. In terms of immediate jobs, between October 1993 and September, Restart interviews led to 43,880 clients being placed into jobs. This represents 1.5 per cent. of the total Restart interviews conducted. I should emphasise that the figures quoted above represent only the immediate result of Restart interviews. Many other people subsequently take up a job or a place on an employment or training programme as a result of the guidance given to them at their interview. Independent researchers who have studied the Restart Interview programme have all concluded that this indirect effect is extremely significant.
I hope this is helpful.
Dr. Lynne Jones: To ask the Secretary of State of Employment what percentages of the (a) male and (b) female population aged between 55 and 65 years are currently in paid (i) full-time and (ii) part-time employment.
Mr. Oppenheim: The "Labour Force Survey" for spring 1994 shows that, of men aged 55 64, 50 per cent. were in full-time employment and 6 per cent. in part-time employment. The equivalent figures for women were 15 per cent. and 23 per cent. respectively.
Mr. Dewar: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many people in the latest period for which figures are available took advantage of the employment on trial scheme leaving a job within six weeks without any benefit sanction.
Miss Widdecombe: Unemployed claimants who find work are not required to notify the Employment Service that they are taking advantage of the employment on trial rule. There are as a result no records available of how many people successfully stay in their new jobs rather than returning to unemployment. ES does not currently maintaim records of the number of people who are not sanctioned on leaving a job after the sixth week of their trial period.
Column 1357offices in England and Wales and (b) the total numbers of factory inspectors employed in HSE in Great Britain.
1 April |(a) |(b) -------------------------------- 1979 |579.0 |742.5 1980 |585.5 |759.5 1981 |569.5 |735.0 1982 |531.0 |678.5 1983 |507.5 |654.5 1984 |487.0 |627.0 1985 |504.0 |651.0 1986 |492.0 |623.0 1987 |490.5 |621.5 1988 |468.0 |592.5 1989 |481.0 |604.0 1990 |509.5 |634.5 1991 |521.0 |651.0 1992 |561.0 |698.5 1993 |567.0 |707.5 1994 |562.5 |702.5 Figures show full-time equivalent staff: part-time staff counted as 0.5. Not including specialist inspectors, who were part of the factory inspectorate prior to 1986.
Mr. Oppenheim: The information is not available in the form requested. For the calender years 1981 to 1985 injuries at work were reported under the Notification of Accidents and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations; from 1 April 1986 definitions were extended under the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations. The number of accidents that led to these injuries cannot be separately identified.
Mr. Oppenheim: Section 40 of the Mines and Quarries Act 1954 requires the mine manager to provide refuge holes at prescribed intervals on roads along which vehicles operate. More detailed requirements concerning the intervals between refuge holes in coal mines, their dimensions and other matters are set out in regulation 59 of the Coal and Other Mines (Shafts and Outlets) Regulations 1960.
Mr. Hardy: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what is his estimate of (a) the number of refuge holes which have been removed from the roadways of working collieries and (b) the extent of new roadway which has been provided without such refuge holes, together with an estimate of the shortfall in the number of such holes; what reasons he has been given for such removal or non-construction; and who authorised such removal or
Mr. Oppenheim: The Health and Safety Executive is not aware that any refuge holes have been removed from the roadways of working collieries or that any new roadway has been built without the required refuge holes. Any shortfall in provision arises from the repair of rebuilding of existing refuge holes necessitated by strata
Column 1358movement. It is not possible to estimate the extent of this work at any one time.
Mr. Oppenheim: This information is not available. Conditions below ground are constantly changing due to the dynamic effects of strata movement which requires refuge holes to be repaired or remade as appropriate.
Mr. Hardy: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many special breaches of regulation have occurred in the last two years in respect of the removal of or failure to provide refuge holes by the roadways of working collieries.
Mr. Clapham: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what assessment he has made of the effect of re establishing refuge holes on (a) the established rock bolting pattern and (b) the affected roadways.
In re establishing refuge holes, the method of supporting them in conjunction with the support system adopted for the roadway has to be fully considered in the preparation of the manager's support rules.
Mr. Howarth: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what transitional protection will be afforded to non employed status trainees hitherto eligible to benefit under his Department's analogous industrial injuries scheme, following the enactment of the Social Security (Incapacity For Work) Act 1994; and what transitional arrangements will apply for participants in other schemes funded through his Department and affected by this legislation.
Mr. Paice: With effect from 13 April 1995, non employed status participants who are injured, or who contract a prescribed disease, will need to make their initial claim to the Department of Social Security. Where a trainee does not satisfy the contribution requirements for the receipt of incapacity benefit, income support can be claimed.
Payment of disablement benefit and severe disablement allowance is unaltered by the new legislation. Non employed status participants who qualify for these benefits, whether adults or young people, will continue to receive equivalent payments through the Department under the analogous industrial injuries scheme.
The new arrangements are not retrospective. Payments to participants injured prior to 13 April 1995 will continue for as long as medical evidence confirms this to be necessary.
Column 1359running cost for each property for the latest year available broken down into (a) furniture and fittings, (b) maintenance, (c) staffing, including the number of butlers, cooks and housekeepers, (d) food and hospitality and (e) other costs; what is the estimated value of each property; and how many times in the latest year the property was stayed in overnight by a Minister.
Mr. Raynsford: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what steps he is taking to investigate the incident affecting the Jubilee line extension project which has caused the closure of Westminster underground station.
Mr. Oppenheim: On 27 October the Health and Safety Commission announced that it had asked the Health and Safety Executive to investigate the partial collapse of tunnels under construction at Heathrow airport. The tunnelling technique being used, the new austrian tunnelling method--NATM-- has also been adopted for use on part of the Jubilee line extension project; contractors have suspended the use of the NATM technique as a precautionary measure. HSE has asked for tunnelling not to re start at Heathrow or on the Jubilee line until it is clear that this can be done safely.
Apart from NATM, HSE will continue to address health and safety matters in connection with other aspects of work on both projects as part of its general programme of inspection visits.
Mr. Byers: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many contracts his Department or Government agencies responsible to his Department have entered into with Spencer Stuart consultants in the last two years.
Mr. Spellar: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment if he will make a statement regarding the issuing of work permits to non-European Community citizens resident in other European Community countries.
Mr. Oppenheim: A work permit is normally required by an overseas national from outside the European economic area who is seeking to take employment in Great Britain, irrespective of his current place of residence.
Column 1360of preparation for market testing in his Department in terms of (a) payments to consultants and (b) other costs.
Mr. Oppenheim: The total costs for the Employment Department group for the period to 30 June 1994 have been estimated as follows: (a) £1.9 million for consultancy fees, which covers consultancy support to in-house bid teams and to the Department;
(b) £4.4 million for other departmental costs, which covers set up and running costs for central market testing units.
Mr. Hendry: To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food how many category 3(c) applications his Department has received for (a) sheep quota and (b) suckler cow quota for each year for which figures are available; and how many of those applications have been successful.
Mr. Jack: Some 2,541 applications for sheep quota and 1,606 applications for suckler cow quota from category 3(c) of the national reserve have been received. Allocations will be made later in November. I will write to my hon. Friend with further details as soon as I am able.
Mr. Harvey: To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food when he expects allocation of further sheep quota from the national reserve to be made; and how long a period of time will be given thereafter for leasing and transferring of quotas.
Mr. Jack: The processing of sheep quota from the national reserve categories 3 to 7 will be completed by mid-November and allocations will be made thereafter. The second period for notifying transfers and leases will open after reserve allocations have been made and is expected to last for six weeks.
Mrs. Browning [pursuant to his reply, 21 April 1994, column 625- 26]: The table included in my predecessor's reply showed importof small numbers of live animals from Nicaragua and Iran. Subsequent investigation by Her Majesty's Customs and Excise has established that in all cases these imports were in fact from the Irish Republic but had been miscoded.
A revised table, included other revisions, follows.
Numbers of live animals imported into the United Kingdom during 1992 |All bovines |Sheep |Goats |Pigs |All horses |of which <1>fat ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- France |2,746 |202 |261 |- |- |515 Belgium-Luxembourg |11 |- |59 |- |- |416 Netherlands |4,577 |538 |392 |- |- |393 Germany |177 |35 |5 |- |- |354 Italy |19 |- |- |- |- |104 Irish Republic<2> |72,269 |40,430 |205,300 |71 |109,652 |4,360 Denmark |329 |91 |- |- |- |214 Greece |- |- |- |- |- |13 Portugal |- |- |- |- |- |15 Spain |- |- |- |- |- |11 Iceland |- |- |- |- |- |20 Norway |- |- |- |- |- |6 Sweden |- |- |- |- |- |27 Finland |- |- |- |- |- |3 Switzerland |- |- |- |- |- |20 Austria |- |- |- |- |- |25 Turkey |- |- |- |- |- |2 Poland |187 |- |- |- |- |122 Czechoslovakia |250 |- |- |- |- |2 Hungary |- |- |- |- |- |55 Former USSR |- |- |- |- |- |83 Canada |234 |- |- |- |- |13 USA |- |- |- |- |12 |488 Austral-Oceania |29 |- |- |- |- |- Puerto-Rico |- |- |- |- |- |1 Colombia |- |- |- |- |- |1 Chile |- |- |- |- |- |7 Argentina<3> |- |- |- |- |- |116 Barbados |- |- |- |- |- |3 Sudan |- |- |- |- |- |2 Jordan |- |- |- |- |- |8 Kuwait |- |- |- |- |- |5 Guyana |- |- |- |- |- |- Israel |- |- |- |- |- |- Senegal |- |- |- |- |- |- Guinea |- |- |- |- |- |- Ghana |- |- |- |- |- |- Cameroon |- |- |- |- |- |- South Africa |- |- |- |- |- |- Namibia |- |- |- |- |- |- Dubai |- |- |- |- |- |3 Japan |- |- |- |- |- |1 Australia |- |- |- |- |- |12 New Zealand |- |- |- |- |- |41 Hong Kong |- |- |- |- |- |1 Malaysia |- |- |- |- |- |- China |- |- |- |- |- |- Philippines |- |- |- |- |- |- Indonesia |- |- |- |- |- |- Total |80,828 |41,296 |206,017 |71 |109,664 |7,462 Source: Her Majesty's Customs and Excise Notes: <1> Recorded as "fat" and covers heifers and steers for slaughter. <2> Some sheep import data estimated from weight of animals concerned. <3> Some horse import data estimated from weight of animals concerned.
Mr. Morley: To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (1) how many consignments of calves have been exported since 1 October 1994 from (a) Humberside airport, (b) Bournemouth Hurn airport, (c) Aldergrove airport and (d) other United Kingdom airports; and if he will make a statement;
(2) how many (a) calves and (b) sheep and lambs have been exported since 1 October 1994 from (i) Poole, (ii) Portsmouth, (iii) Plymouth, (iv) Grimsby, (v) Dover, (vi)
Column 1362Newhaven (vii) Fishguard, (viii) Holyhead, (ix) Shoreham-on-Sea, (x) Sheerness and (xi) other United Kingdom ports; and if he will make a statement.
Mrs. Browning: The information is not collected centrally but the hon. Member will know that the export of live animals for slaughter or further fattening on new routes is allowed only when we are satisfied with the arrangements for protecting the welfare of the animals.
No shipments of these categories of animal have been authorised since 1 October from the ports of Newhaven, Shoreham-on-Sea and Sheerness.
Column 1363My right hon. Friend, the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland has advised that three consignments of calves have been exported from Aldergrove airport.
Mr. Morley: To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food if he will place in the Library the account of the Government veterinary surgeon of the first flight of calves from Bournemouth Hurn airport.
Mr. Austin Mitchell: To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, pursuant to his answer to the hon. Member for Blaenau Gwent (Mr. Smith) of 17 October, Official Report , column 142 , what was the nature of the French memorandum briefly discussed in any other business at the Agriculture Council meeting in Brussels on 20 September; and what were the French proposals on the future of European agriculture.
Mr. Jack: The memorandum, tabled by the French Agriculture Minister, is entitled "Ambitions for European Agriculture". It includes various ideas on the implementation of GATT obligations in relation to market access and exports, and points to the need both for further simplification of the common agricultural policy and for greater stress on subsidiarity. The memorandum also argues for a reduction in the set-aside rate for 1994 95, which was the subject of a Commission proposal discussed at the Council on 24 25 October.
Mr. Byers: To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what properties are owned or leased by his Department for the use of Ministers; what was the total running cost for each property for the latest year available broken down into (a) furniture and fittings, (b) maintenance, (c) staffing, including the number of butlers, cooks and housekeepers, (d) food and hospitality and (e) other costs; what is the estimated value of each property; and how many times in the latest year the property was stayed in overnight by a Minister.
Mr. Ron Davies: To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food how many farmers in England have not yet received payment of their advance payments with respect to the 1994 sheep annual premium scheme.
Mr. Jack: As at 28 October 1994 first and second advance payments of 1994 sheep annual premium have been made on 36,300 claims, 92 per cent. of all non-rejected claims received. The number of unpaid claims is 3,164. Payment on the majority of outstanding claims will be made when allocations from the national reserve of quota are made and, in some cases, once producers have been given a further opportunity to acquire quota in the second transfer and lease period.
Column 1364whether current tests properly identify the presence of dioxins in (a) milk and (b) elsewhere in the food chain.
Mrs. Browning: The Ministry's analysis of dioxins in milk and other foods has been conducted by the Central Science Laboratory's food science laboratory in Norwich. All the data that the laboratory has provided on dioxins in food meet strict, published acceptance criteria. Furthermore, the laboratory has demonstrated in independent, international inter- laboratory trials that its data are accurate and reliable. As a result, the laboratory is highly regarded by other analysts, enforcement authorities, and researchers in the broader scientific community. I am satisfied that the analysis conducted for the Ministry properly identifies and quantifies dioxins in food.
Mrs. Browning: The results were announced in the October 1994 issue of the "Food Safety Information Bulletin". Full details of the work and the analytical results are given in the supplementary food surveillance information sheet No. 44 and have been made available to the relevant local authority and other interested parties. I have placed copies of the bulletin and information sheet in the Library.
Ms Armstrong: To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what steps his Department are taking to continue monitoring (a) the Castle Cement Works plant and (b) other plants where recycled liquid fuel is being burnt.
Mrs Browning: Tests on samples of cows' milk taken in July this year from farms around the Castle Cement Works in Clitheroe gave no indication of any elevation in levels of dioxins, heavy metals or arsenic. The Ministry has no plans for further monitoring around the Castle Cement Works or any other plants where similar fuel is used.
Mr. Byers: To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food how many contracts his Department or Government agencies responsible to his Department have entered into with Spencer Stuart consultants in the last two years.
Mr. Jack: From the Ministry's central records, excluding Agencies, covering the financial year 1990 91 to 1993 94 inclusive, no contracts were entered into with Spencer Stuart consultants. Full returns for the financial year 1994 95 are not due until May 1995. For Government agencies responsible to the Minister, information is currently being gathered and I will write to the hon. Member as soon as this is available.
Mr. Jack: The Council agenda has not yet been finalised but it is expected to include further discussions on future arrangements for access and control in western waters' fisheries, and a first discussion of a proposed amendment to the basic market regulation. The Commission is also likely to make proposals on tariff arrangements for a limited range of imports and on prices for fish and fish products for 1995.
Mr. Flynn: To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what is his current calculation of the costs of preparation for market testing in his Department in terms of (a) payments to consultants and (b) other costs.
Mr. Jack: The derogation which allowed certain French vessels to use drift nets up to 5 km in length lapsed on 31 December 1993. Subsequently, all EU vessels have been required to use drift nets which do not exceed 2.5 km long--except in the Baltic which is managed by the International Baltic Sea Commission. This rule was applied in the north-east Atlantic fishery during the 1994 season, when French, Irish and United Kingdom vessels fished with draft nets. Subsequent consideration of this matter will be guided by the results of further scientific guidance.
Mr. Morley: To ask the Minister of Agriculture Fisheries and Food (1) what is his policy on the motion agreed by the European Parliament on 29 September to ban the use of drift nets beyond EU member state's 12-mile zones; whether he expects this proposal to be raised at the next Fisheries Council meeting; and if he will make a statement;
(2) what plans there are to improve the enforcement of current regulations on the use of drift nets in European waters; and if he will make a statement;
(3) what plans there are to ban the use of drift nets in European waters; if he will be supporting these; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Jack: The Government's view is that drift nets up to 2.5 km long should continue to be legally acceptable both in coastal waters and elsewhere in the absence of scientific evidence that demonstrates a case for a ban; but that there is no justification for nets to be used which are more than 2.5 km long. The European Parliament's view that drift nets used in member state's 12-mile limit should be specifically authorised by the Commission appears to be unnecessarily bureaucratic and inconsistent with subsidiarity. We support cost-effective and practical enforcement arrangements, and discussions on this will take place before next year's fishery opens.
Decisions on the Commission's proposal are not expected to be made by the Council in the advance of further work which has been commissioned from the EU's scientific technical and economic committee on fisheries which is scheduled to meet in December.
Mr. Morley: To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (1) what research has been carried out into the social effects on traditional fishing communities of the use of drift nets in European waters;
(2) what research has been carried out into the effects of the use of drift nets in European waters on the population of (a) the striped dolphin and (b) other marine wildlife.
Mr. Jack: I am not aware of any research into the social effects on traditional fishing communities of the use of drift nets in European Waters, although the Commission's report on drift nets issued in April 1994 refers to the difficulties that certain communities would experience if drift netting was to be banned, because they are so dependent on drift net fisheries. IFREMER, the French marine research institute, reported last year on its research work into the effects of drift nets on a range of marine creatures including striped dolphins.
Mr. Morley: To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food how many drift nets in use by (a) United Kingdom, (b) Irish, (c) French and (d) Spanish fishing vessels were measured by the north-east Atlantic tuna fishery this summer; which was the longest drift net recorded and how many times it was measured; how and by whom this net was measured (i) at sea and (ii) on land; and what lengths were recorded on each occasion.
Mr. Hanson: To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what is the current average subsidy paid to farmers in the United Kingdom from all Government and European Economic Community sources.
Mr. Jack: Farmers benefit from direct payments and through other CAP support measures, but these can change over short periods of time due, for example, to exchange rate fluctuations, so no figure which accords with a current average figure is maintained. However, details of public expenditure under the CAP and on national grants and subsidies are contained in table 9.1 of "Agriculture in the United Kingdom 1993", a copy of which is in the Library of the House.