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Column 913


Per cent.                                                

Board    |1988-89|1989-90|1990-91|1991-92|1992-93        

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

Northern |11.5   |11.0   |11.0   |11.1   |16.8           

Southern |10.7   |10.7   |10.8   |12.4   |11.9           

Eastern  |14.6   |13.4   |12.3   |12.9   |13.9           

Western  |14.4   |14.6   |15.1   |15.8   |10.2           

(1) Expenditure figures for 1993-94 are not yet          

available.                                               

(2) Expenditure figures for the provision of child care  

services used to calculate the above percentage figures  

do not include Administration or Fieldwork costs.        

(3) The financial reporting arrangements of Boards were  

revised in 1992-93 to accommodate the Health Service     

reforms. It is therefore difficult to meaningfully       

compare the 1992-93 percentage figures with those of     

previous years.                                          

Tourism

Mr. Colvin: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if he will publish figures showing the number of inquiries made to the Northern Ireland tourist board by potential holidaymakers; what further measures are proposed to encourage visitors on vacation; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Ancram [holding answer 14 December 1994]: For the year to date, the NITB has handled 281,411 inquires--a 28 per cent. rise on 1993. In particular, inquiries during October 1994 increased by 92 per cent. on the same period last year. NITB is planning a stepped up promotional campaign for 1995 in all its main markets to capitalise on this increasing interest.

Mr. Colvin: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if he will make a statement on the recent announcement of a £6.8 million initiative to boost tourism in the island of Ireland in co-operation with the Government of the Republic of Ireland.

Mr. Ancram [holding answer 14 December 1994]: The tourism marketing initiative builds upon existing co-operative activities by the tourism authorities in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. It consists of a set of pilot programmes and will be concentrated on marketing the island of Ireland in the United States, Great Britain and Holland. For a limited investment by the Northern Ireland tourist board, it will bring significant benefits to an industry with considerable potential to assist economic growth throughout Ireland.

EDUCATION

Special Needs

Mr. Win Griffiths: To ask the Secretary of State for Education if he will make it his policy to ensure that when children are given statements of special educational needs that their parents or guardians are advised to investigate whether their children may be eligible for benefits and or the disabled living allowance.

Mr. Forth: Statements for children with special educational needs are made by local education authorities. The code of practice on the identification and assessment of special educational needs, issued jointly by the Department and the Welsh Office in May this year, advised LEAs to work in close partnership with the parents of such children, and also with the local health and social services. How, within these collaborative arrangements, parents or guardians are advised on entitlement to benefit is best decided locally by the parties concerned.

Market Testing

Mr. Milburn: To ask the Secretary of State for Education, pursuant to her answer of 12 December, Official Report, column 456, on market testing, what is the total value of the contracts awarded.

Mr. Boswell: The total value of the contracts concerned, two of which are still in the process of being finalised, is some £1,036,000 per annum.

Teaching Qualifications

Mr. Byers: To ask the Secretary of State for Education for each main subject, what percentage of teachers,


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according to the 1993 secondary schools staffing survey, without a past A-level qualification in that subject, taught that subject in the survey week.

Mr. Boswell: The following table is derived from the 1992 secondary schools staffing survey and shows the percentage of full-time secondary teachers in England who gave some tuition in a subject in which they held no post-A level academic qualification, and the percentage of tuition this represented. About half of this tuition was by teachers with five or more years experience of teaching the subject.


                                      |Tuition by these                   

                    |Per cent. of     |teachers as a per                  

                    |teachers         |cent.                              

                    |without a        |of all tuition in                  

Subject             |qualification    |subject                            

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

Mathematics         |22               |10                                 

Biology             |14               |11                                 

Chemistry           |5                |3                                  

Physics             |6                |4                                  

General Science     |16               |9                                  

CDT                 |50               |34                                 

English             |27               |14                                 

French              |18               |9                                  

German              |24               |13                                 

Other Languages     |34               |19                                 

History             |28               |11                                 

Geography           |29               |10                                 

Music               |19               |5                                  

Art                 |24               |7                                  

Physical Education  |32               |9                                  

Religious Education |54               |25                                 

The Government have, for a number of years, provided substantial support for programmes to enhance and update teachers' subject knowledge in support of the national curriculum.

Disabled Access

Mr. Kilfoyle: To asks the Secretary of State for Education what directions she has issued concerning the provision of disabled access within new school buildings.

Mr. Forth: The requirements for disabled access to new school buildings are currently set out in the Department's design note 18 "Access for Disabled People to Educational Buildings". As my hon. Friend the Minister for the Disabled announced on 24 November, Official Report, column 743 , the Government intend to bring the requirements into line with the national standards specified in part M of the Building Regulations 1991. We shall be consulting on the necessary measures shortly.

Overseas Students

Mrs. Helen Jackson: To ask the Secretary of State for Education if she will publish the responses to the consultation exercise engaged in by her Department regarding the proposal to amend the Education (Fees and Awards) Regulations 1983 to allow institutions to charge overseas students on part-time courses higher fees.

Mr. Boswell: In line with the code of practice on access to Government information, a summary of the responses to the consultation exercise will be provided in the new year following a decision on the proposal. Copies of individual responses will be made available in the


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public enquiry room of the Department, unless the respondent has specifically requested confidentiality.

City Technology Colleges

Ms Estelle Morris: To ask the Secretary of State for Education if she will list for each city technology college the percentage of pupils entitled to receive free school meals.

Mr. Robin Squire: Using January 1994 data, the percentages are as follows:


               |Percentage           

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

Kingshurst     |30                   

Djanogly       |32                   

Macmillan      |27                   

Emmanuel       |11                   

Dixons         |13                   

Leigh          |12                   

Harris         |23                   

BRITschool     |22                   

Bacon's        |31                   

Haberdashers'  |28                   

Thomas Telford |14                   

Brooke Weston  |12                   

ADT            |26                   

Landau Forte   |8                    

John Cabot     |19                   

Grant-maintained Schools

Ms Estelle Morris: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what has been the total number and the percentage of parents (a) voting in favour of grant-maintained status, (b) voting against it and (c) not voting in parental ballots on grant-maintained status (i) from September 1988 to date and (ii) from September 1993 to date.

Mr. Robin Squire: The information requested is as follows:


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                                   Number and                                         

                                   percentage of                                      

                                   eligible parents                                   

Period                            |Voting yes  |Voting no   |Not voting               

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

1 September 1988-15 December 1994 |558787 (41%)|324986 (24%)|493830 (36%)             

1 September 1993-15 December 1994 |70116 (34%) |63564 (31%) |73499 (35%)              

because of rounding, the sum of percentages shown may not be 100 per cent.            

Ms Estelle Morris: To ask the Secretary of State for Education how many complaints her Department has received about the admissions policies of grant-maintained schools; to which schools they relate; and, in each case, what action has been taken.

Mr. Robin Squire: The Department receives a substantial number of inquiries, both in writing and by telephone, about school admissions. Sometimes concern is expressed about the particular admissions arrangements operated by a school or local education authority. The Department does not keep a central register of admissions inquiries, but it is comparatively rare to receive a specific complaint about the admissions policy of an individual GM school.

Ms Estelle Morris: To ask the Secretary of State for Education which grant-maintained secondary schools include as part of their admissions policy an interview with (a) pupils and (b) parents which forms a significant part in the allocation of places, other than church schools which do so solely to judge religious suitability and make this clear in their written policy.

Mr. Robin Squire: This information is not readily available. I shall write to the hon. Member as soon as possible in the new year.

Ms Estelle Morris: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what was the total value of the formula allocation of capital grant to grant- maintained schools in each year since 1990.

Mr. Robin Squire: Capital formula allocations to grant-maintained schools in the years between 1990 91 and 1993 94 are set out in the table. Formula allocation 1994 95 is now the responsibility of the Funding Agency for Schools. I have asked the chairman of the agency to write to the hon. Member with this information.


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           |Allocation           

Year       |£ million            

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

1990-91    |0.7                  

1991-92    |2.5                  

1992-93    |6.4                  

1993-94    |16.0                 

Universities (Business Links

Mr. Sheerman: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what steps she is taking to measure the number of joint projects between universities and (a) local authorities, (b) chambers of commerce and (c) training and enterprise councils.

Mr. Boswell: My right hon. Friend welcomes the growing number of such joint projects, of many diverse kinds. Their development is a matter for autonomous universities and their partners, and no information is collected centrally.

Mr. Sheerman: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what steps he is taking to encourage university involvement in business links initiatives.

Mr. Boswell: Responsibility for developing links with business, of all kinds, rests with individual institutions. Many are conscious of the need to do so, and some are working with the local business links promoted by my right hon. Friend the President of the Board of Trade. Ministers take opportunities, by means of speeches or visits, to encourage universities to see the importance of developing links with business. Equally, we encourage the world of business to recognise the value of working with universities.


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Ministerial Travel

Mr. MacShane: To ask the Secretary of State for Education how many train journeys of one hour's duration or more she has made in Britain in 1994 in the course of her official duties.

Mrs. Gillian Shephard: Whenever possible, I travel by train to official engagements. I have made eight journeys as defined by train since my appointment.

Student Loans and Grants

Mr. Blunkett: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what is the total predicted saving to the Treasury in 1995 96, based on the latest available record, from the phasing out of the means-tested allowance payable as part of the maintenance grant to students over 26 years who had previously been in employment.

Mr. Boswell: We estimate that the total saving in the 1995 96 financial year will be about £5 million. This reflects the maintenance of the allowance to existing students, and savings will increase substantially in subsequent years.

Mr. Blunkett: To ask the Secretary of State for Education (1) what is the new rate of loan to apply to students who are studying in London and living away from the parental home but who could conveniently live with their parents while studying;

(2) what is the total saving based on the latest available student numbers which would accrue in 1995 96 from the introduction of the new rate of loan to apply to students who are studying in London and living away from the parental home but who could conveniently live with their parents while studying; and what guidelines he has issued regarding the definition of convenient.


Column 920

Mr. Boswell: The maximum rate of student loan for students who are studying in London and living away from the parental home but who could conveniently live with their parents will be £1,530 in the 1995 96 academic year. Resources available through full year loan and grant to these students will increase broadly in line with the general uprating for student support. It is for local education authorities to decide whether it is convenient for students to live with their parents. We do not collect data on the number of students affected by such decisions by their local education authorities.

Science Subjects

Mr. Battle: To ask the Secretary of State for Education if he will list for each year since 1979 the numbers and percentages of (a) students attaining GCSE, or equivalent, in each science subject, (b) students attaining A levels in science subjects, (c) students studying science and technology to degree level and (d) graduates in science and technology by university.

Mr. Boswell: The table lists for England the numbers and percentages of (a) students attaining GCSE, or equivalent, in each science subject and (b) students attaining A-levels in science subjects for each year since 1979.

Information on the numbers of students each year studying, and graduating in, science--including technological--subjects at English former University Funding Council funded universities is contained in volume 1 of "Students and Staff" published by the "Universities Statistical Record", copies of which are in the House Library. Comparable information for institutions recently awarded university status is not available in published form and I will write to the hon. Member with the data.


Column 919


(A) GCSE results of pupils attaining science subjects                                                                                                     

Academic year                                           |Maths        |Physics      |Chemistry    |Biology      |Other science|Single/double              

                                                                                                                              |science                    

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

(i) numbers in thousands                                                                                                                                  

1979                                                    |509.0        |201.1        |149.9        |264.7        |249.5        |-                          

1980                                                    |558.0        |219.8        |164.9        |281.3        |287.8        |-                          

1981                                                    |557.9        |226.0        |169.0        |285.8        |285.3        |-                          

1982                                                    |582.3        |246.6        |184.6        |301.0        |295.0        |-                          

1983                                                    |569.1        |256.4        |193.4        |301.7        |275.7        |-                          

1984                                                    |560.0        |248.7        |195.3        |300.2        |268.7        |-                          

1985                                                    |550.8        |245.8        |195.8        |291.5        |266.0        |-                          

1986                                                    |535.2        |235.8        |190.4        |276.5        |262.9        |-                          

1987                                                    |537.3        |234.6        |191.4        |271.3        |263.1        |-                          

1988                                                    |503.6        |217.6        |181.1        |239.9        |248.5        |-                          

1989                                                    |493.8        |192.3        |173.3        |206.7        |40.6         |131.4                      

1990                                                    |461.6        |150.0        |140.1        |166.7        |30.9         |190.8                      

1991                                                    |449.1        |98.3         |96.3         |107.0        |20.1         |284.9                      

1992                                                    |439.0        |51.4         |50.9         |55.1         |15.8         |372.0                      

1993                                                    |428.4        |43.9         |44.4         |47.8         |12.9         |378.6                      

                                                                                                                                                          

(ii) as a percentage of the 15 year old population      |1979         |66.1         |26.1         |19.5         |34.4         |32.4                       

1980                                                    |70.3         |27.7         |20.8         |35.5         |36.3         |-                          

1981                                                    |70.6         |28.6         |21.4         |36.2         |36.1         |-                          

1982                                                    |75.3         |31.9         |23.9         |38.9         |38.1         |-                          

1983                                                    |75.1         |33.8         |25.5         |39.8         |36.4         |-                          

1984                                                    |75.6         |33.6         |26.4         |40.5         |36.3         |-                          

1985                                                    |75.3         |33.6         |26.8         |39.8         |36.4         |-                          

1986                                                    |75.2         |33.1         |26.8         |38.9         |37.0         |-                          

1987                                                    |74.5         |32.5         |26.5         |37.6         |36.5         |-                          

1988                                                    |74.8         |32.3         |26.9         |35.7         |36.9         |-                          

1989                                                    |78.4         |30.5         |27.5         |32.8         |6.4          |20.8                       

1990                                                    |77.5         |25.2         |23.5         |28.0         |5.2          |32.0                       

1991                                                    |78.4         |17.2         |16.8         |18.7         |3.5          |49.7                       

1992                                                    |79.3         |9.3          |9.2          |10.0         |2.9          |67.2                       

1993                                                    |80.1         |8.2          |8.3          |8.9          |2.4          |70.8                       

1979-88: data is for all school leavers (Source School Leavers Survey).                                                                                   

1989-91: data is for the 15 year old pupils (School Examination Survey).                                                                                  

1992-93: data is for 15 year old pupils, including special schools (Publication of the School Performance Tables).                                        

Age as at start of academic years.                                                                                                                        


(B) GCE A/AS examination results of students in schools and further education colleges                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   

Academic Year                                  |Maths                                         |Physics                                       |Chemistry                                     |Biology                                                                                                                                     

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

(i) numbers in thousands                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 

1979                                           |41.8                                          |32.9                                          |29.6                                          |25.6                                                                                                                                        

1980                                           |45.5                                          |34.6                                          |29.2                                          |26.9                                                                                                                                        

1981                                           |47.1                                          |35.5                                          |31.5                                          |27.7                                                                                                                                        

1982                                           |50.4                                          |37.3                                          |33.8                                          |29.0                                                                                                                                        

1983                                           |51.6                                          |37.0                                          |33.9                                          |30.2                                                                                                                                        

1984                                           |52.6                                          |37.7                                          |33.9                                          |30.0                                                                                                                                        

1985                                           |53.6                                          |36.9                                          |34.0                                          |29.5                                                                                                                                        

1986                                           |53.0                                          |35.0                                          |32.8                                          |27.8                                                                                                                                        

1987                                           |50.0                                          |31.9                                          |31.3                                          |28.0                                                                                                                                        

1988                                           |51.1                                          |31.6                                          |30.8                                          |27.7                                                                                                                                        

1989                                           |48.6                                          |30.9                                          |29.5                                          |28.4                                                                                                                                        

1990                                           |47.1                                          |31.0                                          |31.8                                          |31.4                                                                                                                                        

1991                                           |44.5                                          |28.5                                          |29.9                                          |29.0                                                                                                                                        

1992                                           |44.0                                          |28.5                                          |30.0                                          |32.9                                                                                                                                        

1993                                           |44.3                                          |27.4                                          |29.0                                          |32.6                                                                                                                                        

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

(ii) as a percentage of 17 year old population                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           

1979                                           |5.6                                           |4.4                                           |4.0                                           |3.5                                                                                                                                         

1980                                           |6.0                                           |4.5                                           |3.8                                           |3.5                                                                                                                                         

1981                                           |6.1                                           |4.6                                           |4.1                                           |3.6                                                                                                                                         

1982                                           |6.3                                           |4.7                                           |4.2                                           |3.6                                                                                                                                         

1983                                           |6.5                                           |4.6                                           |4.2                                           |3.8                                                                                                                                         

1984                                           |6.8                                           |4.8                                           |4.4                                           |3.9                                                                                                                                         

1985                                           |7.0                                           |4.8                                           |4.5                                           |3.9                                                                                                                                         

1986                                           |7.1                                           |4.7                                           |4.4                                           |3.7                                                                                                                                         

1987                                           |6.8                                           |4.3                                           |4.3                                           |3.8                                                                                                                                         

1988                                           |7.1                                           |4.4                                           |4.3                                           |3.9                                                                                                                                         

1989                                           |6.7                                           |4.3                                           |4.1                                           |3.9                                                                                                                                         

1990                                           |7.0                                           |4.6                                           |4.7                                           |4.6                                                                                                                                         

1991                                           |7.0                                           |4.5                                           |4.7                                           |4.6                                                                                                                                         

1992                                           |7.3                                           |4.7                                           |5.0                                           |5.5                                                                                                                                         

1993                                           |7.6                                           |4.7                                           |5.0                                           |5.6                                                                                                                                         

1979-1991: data is for all school leavers (Source School Examinations Survey formerly the School Leavers Survey) and all students in Further Education Colleges (FE113 Survey).                                                                                                                                                          

1992-93: data is for students of any age in schools and Further Education Colleges who took examinations in the relevant year (School and College Performance Tables).                                                                                                                                                                   

Age as at start of academic years.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       

Executive Search Agencies

Mr. Donohoe: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what use her Department has made of executive search agencies in filling vacancies within her Department and executive agencies administered by her Department during the last year; and how much these services have cost her Department.

Mr. Boswell: During the last year, no use has been made of executive search agencies in filling vacancies within the Department or the Teachers' Pensions Agency, which is the only executive agency administered by this Department.


Column 922

Departmental Telephones Calls

Mr. Donohoe: To ask the Secretary of State for Education how much has been spent on telephone charges; and how many telephone calls have been made by her Department in each of the last five years.

Mr. Forth: Departmental charges for telephony for years 1990 1994 were:

1990 91: £539,000

1991 92: £846,000

1992 93: £863,000

1993 94: £938,000


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Figures are not available centrally for 1989 90 or for the number of telephone calls made in each year.

The sums include installation, rental and maintenance costs, as well as call charges, for the use of telecommunication links. Call charges currently amount to £350,000 a year.

EMPLOYMENT

Jobfinders Grants

Mr. Chidgey: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment when his Department will publish the results from the evaluation of the jobfinders grant pilots that ran between February and July 1994.

Miss Widdecombe: The jobfinders grant pilots were extended to run until the end of December 1994. A report based on analysis of management information will be available in February 1995. Further information from a survey of participants and a follow-up study will be available in August 1995.

Ministerial Travel

Mr. MacShane: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many train journeys of one hour's duration or more he has made in Britain in 1994 in the course of his official duties.

Miss Widdecombe: Whenever it is appropriate, my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State travels by train to official engagements. We estimate that my right hon. Friend and his predecessor have made 25 train journeys of one hour's duration or more on official duties since January 1994.

Absenteeism

Mr. Chidgey: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what was the absenteeism rate for his Department in 1991, 1992 and 1993.

Miss Widdecombe: The information requested is not available.

Mr. Chidgey: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what was the absenteeism rate for the Employment Service in 1991, 1992 and 1993.

Miss Widdecombe: Responsibility for the subject of the question has been delegated to the Employment Service under its chief executive. I have asked him to arrange for a reply to be given. Letter from M. E. G. Fogden to Mr. David Chidgey, dated 19 December 1994:

The Secretary of State has asked me to reply to your question about the absenteeism rate in the Employment Service for the years 1991, 1992 and 1993.

Our central payroll records hold information on individual absence details for sickness absence, special leave without pay and maternity leave but not aggregated information on absenteeism. I am therefore unable to provide this information which could only be obtained at a disproportionate cost.

I am sorry I cannot be more helpful.

Employment Service

Mr. Dowd: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many casual staff have been made


Column 924

redundant from Employment Service offices in each region and at each office in the past year.

Miss Widdecombe: Responsibility for the subject of the question has been delegated to the Employment Service 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 19 December 1994:

The Secretary of State has asked me to reply to your question about how many casual staff have been made redundant from the Employment Service in the past year, by both Region and local office.

The Employment Service (ES) has always employed a proportion of casual staff to enable it to manage staffing levels as unemployment rises and falls. At a time when unemployment is falling, termination of casual contracts is the obvious, sensible step to take and in fact avoids any necessity for redundancies among permanent staff. Casual staff in the ES have contracts which are renewable up to a maximum of 51 weeks (103 weeks in exceptional circumstances). Under the terms of the Employment Protection (Consolidation) Act 1978, only an employee who has a minimum two years continuous service can be regarded as redundant. The number of casual employees who have been made redundant by the ES during the past year therefore is nil. However, in line with the fall in unemployment, the ES has recently reduced the number of casual appointments, with the number of contracts terminated in the 12 months ending 30 November being 7, 300. The majority (7,142) were of Administrative Assistant and Administrative Officer level.

Breakdown of this figure by Regional and Head Office locations is as follows, although details of contracts terminated by individual offices are, unfortunately, not available.


Regional/head office            |Contracts terminated                     

location                                                                  

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

Office for Scotland             |564                                      

Northern Region                 |353                                      

North West Region               |1,050                                    

Yorkshire and Humberside Region |465                                      

Office for Wales                |291                                      

West Midlands Region            |930                                      

East Midlands Region            |520                                      

South West Region               |416                                      

London and South East Region    |2,578                                    

London Head Office              |3                                        

Sheffield Head Office           |130                                      

                                |--------                                 

Total                           |7,300                                    

I hope this is helpful.                                                   

Departmental Budgets

Mr. Dowd: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what was his Department's projected budget for this financial year and for each quarter.

Miss Widdecombe: The Department's projected budget for this financial year is £3,770 million. This information is set out in table 1 of the Employment Department group's departmental report 1994, Cm 2505. The Department does not produce quarterly budgets.

Staff Statistics

Mr. Dowd: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many staff have been drafted into the London region on detached duty for each month of this year.


Column 925

Miss Widdecombe: The information requested is not available.

Mr. Dowd: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many staff drafted into the London region on detached duty have had to stay overnight.

Miss Widdecombe: The information requested is not available.

Labour Statistics

Mr. MacShane: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment (1) what were the proportions of full-time employees earning less per week than (a) £221.50, (b) £208.53, (c) £156.40, (d) £150.80, (e) £131.95, (f) £113.10 and (g) £94.25, excluding overtime payments, and part-time employees earning less per hour than (i) £5.88, (ii) £5.53, (iii) £4.15, (iv) £4.00, (v) £3.50, (vi) £3.00 and (vii) £2.50, excluding overtime payments, in April 1994 in (1) Great Britain as a whole, (2) each county in England, (3) each county in Wales, (4) each London borough and Greater London as a whole and (5) each regional authority and borough in Scotland;

(2) what was the number of adult (a) male and (b) female part-time workers in Great Britain in April 1994, and the proportion of (a) and (b) whose earnings, excluding overtime, fell below (i) £5.88 per hour, (ii) £5.53 per hour, (iii) £4.15 per hour, (iv) £4.00 per hour, (v) £3.50 per hour, (vi) £3.00 per hour, and (vii) £2.50 per hour;

(3) if he will give the proportions of (a) manual, (b) non-manual and (c) all full-time employees (i) male, (ii) female and (iii) all, earning less per week than (1) £221.50, (2) £208.53, (3) £156.40, (4) £150.80, (5) £131.95 and (6) £94.25 in April 1994, excluding overtime payments, by standard economic region, for Great Britain as a whole, and for Northern Ireland.

Mr. Oppenheim: As the information is contained in a number of tables, I will write to the hon. Member and place a copy in the Library.

Fraud

Ms Harman: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what are the measures available to the Employment Service in respect of people it suspects of fraud on unemployment benefit.

Miss Widdecombe: Employment Service inspectors have been vested with inspection powers since the Social Security Act 1975, section 144, and more recently under section 110 of the Social Security Administration Act 1992, which empowers them to examine employers' records at any reasonable time. In England and Wales, they must also operate within the guidelines of the Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984. In Scotland, inspectors operate within common law and apply the rules of fairness.

Fraudulent benefit claimants may be prosecuted under the following legislation:

Social Security Administration Act 1992

112. (1) If a person for the purpose of obtaining any benefit or other payment under the legislation to which section 110 above applies


Column 926

whether for himself or some other person, or for any other purpose connected with that legislation:

(a) makes a statement or representation which he knows to be false;

(b) produces or furnishes, or knowingly causes or knowingly allows to be produced or furnished, any document or information which he knows to be false in a material particular,

he shall be guilty of an offence.

(2) A person found guilty of an offence under subsection (1) above shall be liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale (maximum £5,000), or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 3 months, or both.

(a) the Social Security Act 1973;

(b) the Contributions and Benefits Act;

(c) this Act;

(d) the Pensions Act;

(e) Part 1 of the 1986 Act.

Theft Act 1968

A person who by any deception dishonestly obtains

property--belonging to another with the intention of permanently depriving the other of it, shall on conviction on indictment be liable to:

Summary conviction--A fine not exceeding £5,000 and/or imprisonment not exceeding 6 months.

Indictable conviction--A statutory limitless fine and/or imprisonment not exceeding 10 years.


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