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Mr. Corbyn: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what is the average length of time asylum seekers have been kept in prison; and what is the longest time an asylum seeker has been held in prison. 
Mr. Kirkhope [holding answer 27 January 1997]: Information on the average length of time an asylum seeker has been kept in prison can be obtained only by examination of individual case records. The information requested is, therefore, available only at disproportionate cost.
As at 24 January 1997, the longest currently detained person who had sought asylum, irrespective of their detention location, has been held--solely under Immigration Act powers--since 12 October 1993. The individual concerned was detained at the end of his prison sentence following a court recommendation for deportation following his conviction for supplying class A drugs. He subsequently claimed asylum and the application was refused in February 1994. After exhausting rights of appeal before the domestic courts, he made an application to the European Court of Human Rights and a date for the full hearing is awaited.
Mr. McNamara: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many prisoners are currently held in special secure units in England and Wales; and how long they have been held in such units. 
Miss Widdecombe [holding answer 30 January 1997]: 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.
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Letter from Phil Wheatley to Mr. Kevin McNamara, dated 4 February 1997:
The Home Secretary has asked me, in the absence of the Director General from the office, to reply to your recent Question about the number of prisoners held in special secure units and how long they have been held in such units.
There are currently 29 prisoners being held in special secure units. The details requested are set out in the following tables:
Number of prisoners Length of current detention in SSUs
Belmarsh (remand) 1 prisoner 10 months (March 1996)
7 prisoners 6 months (July 1996)
4 prisoners 4 months (September 1996)
1 prisoner 14 months (November 1995)
Belmarsh (convicted) 1 prisoner 10 years 7 months (June 1986)
1 prisoner 9 years 7 months (June 1987)
1 prisoner 9 years 3 months (October 1987)
1 prisoner 6 years 1 month (December 1990)
1 prisoner 4 years 9 months (April 1992)
1 prisoner 4 years 7 months (June 1992)
Full Sutton 1 prisoner 1 year 4 months (September 1995)
1 prisoner 1 year (January 1996)
1 prisoner 6 months (July 1996)
Whitemoor 1 prisoner 3 years 4 months (August 1993)
1 prisoner 8 years 5 months (July 1988)
1 prisoner 1 year 4 months (September 1995)
2 prisoners 1 year 1 month (December 1995)
1 prisoner 10 months (March 1996)
1 prisoner 5 months (August 1996)
Mr. Ron Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department when the Prison Service inquiry into the death of Geoffrey Thomas was completed; and when he received a copy of the report of the inquiry. 
Miss Widdecombe [holding answer 3 February 1997]: The inquiry was completed on 17 January. I received a copy of the report on 29 January. The Director General of the Prison Service made an announcement on 31 January.
Mr. Richards: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what measures are in place to prevent imprisoned murderers from publishing material which could cause distress to the families of their victims. 
Miss Widdecombe [holding answer 3 February 1997]: The Prison Service has a range of measures in place, the details of which are set out in standing order 5, circular instructions 10/1991 and 21/1992 and instruction to
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governors 73/1995. Copies of these are in the Library. The Government have considered the recent High Court judgment in the case of Simms and O'Brien about visits by journalists and authors to prisoners, and has decided to appeal.
Mr. Menzies Campbell: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what sums were promised by his Department in 1994 for the provision of reconstruction and development in Rwanda; and how much has been disbursed for that purpose to date. 
Dr. Liam Fox: We have provided a total of £175 million, including our share of EU assistance to the Rwanda crisis since 1994. In 1994, no pledges for reconstruction and development were made, but emergency assistance worth more than £57 million, including our share of EU assistance, was disbursed. Since January 1995, we have agreed to provide bilateral assistance totalling £19.5 million in rehabilitation assistance for the period 1995-96 to 1998-99; £12.2 million has been disbursed to date.
Mr. Blunkett: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment how many additional teaching staff have been drafted into the Ridings school, Halifax, as part of the school's recovery plan; and what their functions will be. 
Mr. Forth: According to the action plan and statement of action submitted to the Secretary of State by the Ridings school and Calerdale LEA, five additional teaching staff have been drafted into the Ridings school. One is the associate head teacher whose role is to assist the head. Another has been appointed to provide staff cover for staff absences. The remaining three will cover a range of subject specialisms.
Mr. Matthew Taylor: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment if she will list (a) her Department's budgeted expenditure on (i) advertising, (ii) publicity and (iii) public information campaigns for the period January to March 1997 and (b) the actual expenditure on (1) advertising, (2) publicity and (3) public information campaigns in the period January to March in each of the past five years. 
Mr. Robin Squire: In the first three months of 1997, this Department plans to spend an estimated £3.13 million on advertising and £6.45 million on publicity to provide public information. Producing comparable information for the past five years, isolating particular parts of those years as requested, would involve disproportionate cost.
4 Feb 1997 : Column: 556
Mr. Don Foster: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment if she will list the principal expenditure items and the total expenditure by her Department and its predecessors on advertising and publicity in each year since 1987-88. 
Mr. Squire [holding answer 31 January 1997]: Pursuant to my reply of 30 January, total spending on advertising and publicity for the Department is given below in financial years. Before the merger in July 1995, the Department operated separately funded programmes of publicity. This continued until the end of the financial year 1995-96.
|Department for Education|
|Department of Employment|
(6) Figures for these years do not include expenditure by the Training Agency, Training Commission and Manpower Services Commission.
Current estimated spending for the Department for Education and Employment for 1996-97 is £18.9 million.
Principal expenditure items since the creation of the Department for Education and Employment in July 1995 have been publicity campaigns covering the school and college performance tables, the nursery education voucher scheme, modern apprenticeships, the Disability Discrimination Act 1995, career development loans and "Just the Job". A detailed breakdown of principal expenditure items by both of the former Departments prior to the merger, could be produced only at disproportionate cost.
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