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Column 508progress towards agreement on the European Union's data protection directive; which are the areas where the United Kingdom Government still have major concerns; and which parts of the directive he expects to vote against at the meeting of the Council of Ministers in December.
Mr. Nicholas Baker: The United Kingdom has made clear that it disagrees both with the principle of a directive on data protection, and with the specific proposals put forward by the Commission--which are in many respects over-prescriptive, unnecessarily burdensome and very costly, especially in relation to manually held data. The Government will decide, in the light of all the relevant considerations, what stance to adopt when the directive comes up for discussion in the Council of Ministers.
Mr. Cohen: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) what plans he has to reverse the United Kingdom's policy towards the derogations entered against the first sentence of paragraph 2.4, the second sentence of paragraph 3.1 and from paragraph 3.3 of Council of Europe recommendation R(85)20; and what assessment he has made of the implications of the (a) European Union's proposals for a data protection directive and (b) decisions of the data protection tribunal for these derogations;
(2) what plans he has to reverse the United Kingdom's policy towards the derogations entered against principles 6.2 and 6.3 and paragraph 2 of Council of Europe recommendation R(91)10; and what assessment he has made of the implications of the (a) European Union's proposals for a data protection directive and (b) decisions of the data protection tribunal for these derogations;
(3) what plans he has to reverse the United Kingdom's policy towards the derogations entered against principals 2.2 and 2.4 of Council of Europe recommendation R(87)15; and what assessment he has made of the implications of the (a) European Union's proposals for a data protection directive and (b) decisions of the data protection tribunal for these derogations;
(4) what plans he has to reverse the United Kingdom's policy towards the derogations entered against the second sub-paragraph of paragraph 1.2, the second sentence of paragraph 3.3 and from paragraph 5 of Council of Europe recommendation R(86)1; and what assessment he has made of the implications of the (a) European Union's proposals for a data protection directive and (b) decisions of the data protection tribunal for these derogations;
(5) what plans he has to reverse the United Kingdom's policy towards the derogation entered against Council of Europe recommendation R(83)10; and what assessment he has made of the implications of the (a) European Union's proposals for a data protection directive and (b) decisions of the data protection tribunal for this derogation;
(6) what plans he has to reverse the United Kingdom's policy towards the derogations entered against paragraphs 3.3, 3.4, 5.16 and 7.1 of Council of Europe recommendation R(90)19; and what assessment he has made of the implications of the (a) European Union's proposals for a data protection directive and (b) decisions of the data protection tribunal for these derogations.
It would be premature to consider the implications of the proposed data protection directive for these derogations, until the directive has been adopted. The implications--if any--of the jurisprudence of the data protection tribunal for the derogations remain under consideration.
Mr. Cox: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many (a) men and (b) women convicted of terrorist offences within the United Kingdom are at present serving a prison sentence in England and Wales.
Letter from Derek Lewis to Mr. Tom Cox, dated 28 November 1994: The Home Secretary has asked me to reply to your recent Question about the number of men and women at present serving sentences in England and Wales for terrorist offences.
Readily available information on the number of prisoners serving sentences in England and Wales whose offences were related to terrorism is limited to those classified as category A.
On 24 November 1994 there were 45 men and no women.
Mr. Kirkwood: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will review the system of payments available via the criminal injuries compensation scheme to make better provisions for victims of crime and their families.
Mr. Maclean: The Government reviewed the scheme prior to the introduction earlier this year of the new tariff scheme. The tariff scheme is simpler for claimants to understand, easier to administer and victims will get their money more quickly. It will also enable us to predict and control costs more readily, while at the same time continuing to provide one of the most generous compensation schemes anywhere. The workings of the tariff scheme will be closely monitored and we will make any refinements that prove necessary in the light of experience.
Mr. Kirkwood: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will seek to amend the law to impose a duty on the prosecuting authorities to advise victims of crime and their families about the progress of criminal proceedings in which they were involved including advanced notification of hearing dates, adjournments and grants of bail to the defendant.
Column 510that this should be done to the fullest extent practicable. I am not persuaded that legislation is required to achieve this.
Mr. Madden: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department in what circumstances special constables or their dependants are eligible to make claims for criminal injuries compensation if a special constable is killed or injured on duty; how many such compensation claims have been submitted in each of the last three years, to date; how many were (a) accepted and (b) rejected; and what was the amount of compensation paid in each case.
Mr. Maclean: Special constables are eligible to apply for compensation under the criminal injuries compensation scheme in the same way as any other blameless victim of a crime of violence in Great Britain. In cases of death their dependants are similarly eligible to apply. All applications are considered under the same rules.
The Criminal Injuries Compensation Board does not collate centrally information about claims made by special constables, or other occupational groups.
Country |Country --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Afghanistan |Morocco Albania |Marshall Islands Algeria |Mauritius Angola |Mauritania Antigua and Barbuda |Micronesia Armenia |Moldavia Azerbaidjan |Mongolia Bahamas |Mozambique Bahrain |Myanmar Bangladesh |Namibia Barbados |Nauru Belarus |Nepal Belize |Niger Benin |Nigeria Bhutan |Northern Mariana Islands Botswana |Oman Bulgaria |Pakistan Burkina Faso |Papua New Guinea Burundi |Philippines Cambodia |Qatar Cameroon |Romania Cape Verde |Russia Central African Republic |Rwanda Chad |Saint Christopher and Nevis China |Saint Vincent and Grenadines Comores |Santa Lucia Congo |Samoa (Western) Cuba |Sao Tome and Principe Djibouti |Saudi Arabia Dominica |Senegal Dominican Republic |Seychelles Egypt |Sierra Leone Eritrea |Solomon Islands Ethiopia |Somalia Fiji |South Africa Gabon |Sudan Gambia |Sri Lanka Georgia |Surinam Ghana |Swaziland Grenada |Syria Guinea |Taiwan Guinea Bissau |Tadjikistan Guinea (Equitorial) |Tanzania Guyana |Thailand Haiti |Togo India |Tonga Indonesia |Trinidad and Tobago Iran |Trust Territory of the Pacific Iraq | Islands (Palau) Ivory Coast |Tunisia Jordan |Turkmenistan Kazakhstan |Turkey Kirghizstan |Tuvalu Kiribati |Uganda Korea (North) |Ukraine Kuwait |United Arab Emirates Laos |Uzbekistan Lesotho |Vanuatu Lebanon |Vietnam Liberia |Yemen Libya |Zaire Madagascar |Zambia Maldives |Zimbabwe Mali
Mr. Cohen: To ask the Attorney-General (1) from what sources cases with politically sensitive implications are referred to him; (2) what procedure he adopts when dealing with cases with politically sensitive implications;
(3) what have been the sources encouraging him to take action against (a) anti-road protesters, (b) arms to Iraq cases and (c) whistleblowers against Government activity; and how he has analysed these requests before making his decision.
The Attorney-General: Cases may be drawn to my attention by a variety of sources but cases of the type described by the hon. Member would most probably be referred to me by a prosecuting authority. Criminal proceedings in all cases including those described by the hon. Member would be initiated by the relevant prosecuting authority and not by me.
The proper approach to any such case was described to the House on 28 January 1951, Official Report, column 683 by the then Attorney-General, who set out the principles which have been consistently followed by
Column 512successive Attorneys-General of either party. I have supplied a copy of the relevant text to the hon. Member.
The Attorney-General: If there are specific time constraints, for example if the person whose return is sought is liable to be released from custody in the Republic of Ireland, it is the practice to draw attention to them.
Mr. Mackinlay: To ask the Attorney-General on what date officials in his Department advised the Irish Attorney-General that it was expected that there would be a voluntary return to Northern Ireland by Brendan Smyth and that as a consequence it was not therefore necessary to proceed with the extradition request.
Yes. The majority of surveys under the Fishing Vessels (Safety Provisions) Rules 1975 are undertaken in United Kingdom ports but some are carried out elsewhere, including Spain.
Mr. Bayley: To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food how much public money will be spent on entertaining, Christmas decorations and other festive activities this Christmas season by his Department and Government agencies answerable to his Department; and of this sum how much will be spent in Ministers' private offices and official residences.
Mr. Waldegrave: Disaggregated information of this nature is not available. Such costs are included in the Ministry's expenditure on official hospitality, figures for which were given on 25 October, Official Report, column 548.
Mr. Bayley: To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food how many official Christmas cards he and his Ministers intend to send in 1994; how much these cards will cost (a) to buy, (b) to post and (c) in staff time to sign, address and place in envelopes; and if he will place in the Library a sample copy of the official Christmas card he intends to send this year.
Column 513Christmas Card Council catalogue, at a cost of £252. No estimate is available of the staff and postage costs involved. Samples of the cards have been placed in the Library.
Mr. Campbell-Savours: To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food whether all blood samples from the herd of Linda and Tim Blything of Cheshire were tested for BIV at the Animal Health Institute; and to what extent tests for BIV on the herd were regarded as abnormal.
Mrs. Browning: We do not divulge information on specific cases on the grounds of confidentiality unless the information has already been put into the public domain by the parties concerned. In this instance, we can confirm that blood samples from the herd of Mr. and Mrs. Blything have been examined at the Institute of Animal Health and the results of the serological examinations would suggest that infection by bovine immunodeficiency-like virus--BIV--is widespread in the herd.
Mr. Waldegrave: My Department employs one special adviser. Salaries for special advisers are negotiated individually in relation to their previous earnings, and are confidential. They are, however, normally paid on a special advisers' salary spine of 34 points, ranging from £19,503 to £67,609. Appointments are non-pensionable, and the salary spine reflects this.
Mr. Hicks: To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what discussions he has had with European Commission about alleged illegal national financial support to the pig industry; if EC funding is available to national Governments for schemes to help their pig industry; and what action he proposes taking to assist United Kingdom pig producers.
Mr. Jack: We follow up all evidence of illegal state aids in other member states with the European Commission. Only in the case of France have we established the existence of illegal aid in the pigmeat sector. After a great deal of pressure from us the Commission announced on 27 July that parts of a package of French state aids for pig farmers were illegal. Further proceedings have now begun against French Government guarantees for loans through the Stabiporc scheme. The Commission has sought comments from member states and other interested parties; we will be submitting a robust response and will keep up the pressure on the Commission to ensure that action is taken.
The Government are committed to a successful pig industry and have provided support by releasing feed wheat from intervention stocks, funding research and
Column 514development in the pig sector, giving financial assistance to collaborative marketing projects and promoting improvements in key production areas through the publication of booklets, ADAS workshops and promotions in the trade press.
Mr. Tipping: To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food how many and which local authorities have responded to the consultation paper "Out Forests, the Way Ahead"; and how many and which local authorities have expressed reservations about the proposal to continue with the disposal of woodland and the loss of public access in these woodlands.
Mr. Jack: Thirteen local authorities in England have responded; nine have expressed reservations about the proposals securing public access to woodlands sold by the Forestry Commission as follows: Cheshire County Council
East Hampshire District Council
Exeter City Council
Forest of Dean District Council
Hampshire County Council
Herefordshire and Worcestershire County Council
Leicestershire County Council
New Forest District Council
Northamptonshire County Council
Shropshire County Council
Staffordshire County Council
Test Valley Borough Council
Winchester City Council
Councils which have expressed reservations
Mr. Waldegrave [holding answer 24 November 1994]: No guidelines are issued specifically about relations with lobbying companies. The conduct of Ministers in this respect is governed by the guidance in "Questions of Procedure for Ministers". The departmental staff manual incorporates the general principles of conduct that require civil servants not to misuse information which they acquire in the course of their duties; not to make use of their official position to further their private interests or those of others; and not to receive gifts, hospitality or benefits of any kind from a third party, which might be seen to compromise their personal judgment or integrity.
Mr. Bayley: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how much public money will be spent on entertaining, Christmas decorations and other festive activities this Christmas season by his Department and Government agencies answerable to his Department; and of this sum how much will be spent in Ministers' private offices and official residences.
Miss Widdecombe: Disaggregated information of this nature is not available. Such costs are covered by the entertainment expenditure for this Department which is published in the annual report, a copy of which is available in the Library.
Mr. McCartney: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many people completed their training under (1) the training for work scheme and (2) youth training broken down by gender both regionally and nationally; how many successfully found employment on (a) immediate completion of their training, (b) up to three months after completion of training and (c) up to six months after completion of training; and how many were without work one year after completion, for each year since inception of both schemes.
Mr. Oppenheim: In October 1994 there were 194,981 unfilled vacancies at jobcentres, the highest number since June 1990. Further details of these vacancies, including occupational classification, is available from the NOMIS database in the Library.
Mr. McCartney: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment if he will list the numbers of young people who were registered for youth training, broken down both regionally and nationally and by gender, who are (a) currently without offer of a place, (b) ineligible for income support or (c) receiving special hardship allowance in each year since 1979.
Mr. Paice: The information requested is not available. However, the number of young people covered by the youth training guarantee who have been registered with careers services in England for eight or more weeks is provided in the following table:
Region<1> |October 1993<2>|October 1994<3> ------------------------------------------------------------------------- South East |670 | 48 London |491 |171 Eastern |538 |113 South West |208 |130 West Midlands |183 | 65 East Midlands |290 | 56 Yorkshire and Humberside |146 |174 Merseyside |271 | 27 North West |337 |114 North East |198 |162 England |3,332 |1,060 Notes: <1> Employment Department training, enterprise and education directorate regions. <2> 14 October 1993. <3> 31 October 1994.
All claims for income support from 16 and 17-year-olds are automatically considered under the severe hardship provision unless entitlement under the normal provisions already exist. So far this year, around 86 per cent. of claims under severe hardship have been successful.
Miss Widdecombe: The minimum salary for a 16-year-old employed by the Employment Department group in London is £4,995 for non-industrial staff. There is currently one 16-year-old employed by the ED group in London.
Mr. Bayley: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what was entailed in (a) the contract 18: Cairo waste water project awarded to Biwater International and (b) the supervision of contract 18: Cairo waste water project awarded to Taylor Binnie and Partners.
preparation of the systems and procedures needed to run the new East Bank pumping stations, including the provision of information to management;
operating and maintaining the stations in accordance with these systems and procedures;
training GOSD personnel, who will take over from the contractor and run the stations subsequently; and
technical support following handover to GOSD.
Taylor Binnie is providing detailed technical supervision and administration. Its supervisory role includes ensuring that the systems and procedures to be developed are compatible with GOSD's wider long-term institutional needs.
Mr. Bayley: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what total number of man days were expended in the financial year 1993 94 on projects for (a) curriculum reform in-service training by the British Council and CPL, (b) Uganda Revenue
Column 517Authority: capacity building by Coopers and Lybrand, (c) Bangladesh Power Development Board action plan for performance improvement by Coopers and Lybrand Deloitte, (d) Qa Disi basin water study by Haiste International Ltd., (e) agricultural support services project by Hunting Technical Services and (f) mass privatisation adviser by Warburg and Co. Ltd.
(a) Approximately 540 man days.
(b) Four staff were employed full time throughout 1993 94 and they were joined by two others who worked from May 1993 to the end of the financial year.
(c) Approximately 45 man days.
(d) 1,546 man days.
(e) Approximately 1,949 man days.
(f) This is a fixed fee contract against which there are no pre-set manpower inputs.